Grateful Dead Live at International Speedway on 1969-12-28
SBD>MC>D>CD>EAC>SHN (for B. Peter>Good Lovin'// & end of Lovelight)
SBD>MR>C>D>CD>EAC>SHN (for //Good Lovin'>most of Lovelight)
This is a composite of two sources. A master cassette provides the portion from Black Peter up to the drum solo of Good Lovin' as well as the last couple minutes of Lovelight. Possibly a monitor mix, the master cassette portion varies in quality, most notably degrading in Black Peter and the end of Lovelight. A reel recording provides the end of Good Lovin' through most of Lovelight.
It is possible that this is not the complete show, though it would be likely that only one or two songs may have preceded Black Peter. Sound Forge was used to normalize, correct the pitch of the master cassette portion, and patch together the different sources.
This is a loud and very rowdy show, prompting some priceless banter from the band.
Subject: a lost treasure
Subject: great '69 show
Subject: Mason's will blow you away
Subject: Was there
Subject: A gem
Subject: Really 4.5 stars but . . .
I love the banter, and Hard To Handle is IMO one of the best ! Mason's & Lovelight smoke as well.
Subject: 5 stars
Black Peter begins in the middle, but don't that deter you - as the old reel constitutes itself in your ear you're immersed in real heavy, heavy swamp-groove here - "just then the wind..." is a nice way to be introduced to this show. Unlike poor 12/12's version, which slices a great big chunk from the middle, this one keeps itself in tact towards the end and is definitely worth it.
Everything rolls along adequately enough, vocals screeching through the top-end and Jer's guitar properly on fire - it's Hard to Handle when things *really* start to pick up - they stay at this fever-pitch right through the end - Mason's Children is an often-overlooked tune, but listen to the false-start here as they rev it up - the jam that comes at the conclusion is one I don't think I've heard in any other recording.
Good Lovin', unfortunately, suffers the same fate as 12/12, someone on the controls not quick enough to change the reels and/or too stoned to unpause the button following their "executive decision" to obliterate the drums (or did the reel run out?) A real shame - when the slice happens you're heartbreakingly introduced to the jam-that-could-have-been-were-it-complete.
So, the good is great, and bad is ugly and the ugly is not worth bothering with. Top-drawer with a big asterisk warning.
Subject: All that is promised....
In Boston. This show is solid, but the next show is the real gem. A song by song comparison will reveal this.
Subject: ragged but right
Subject: My first live Dead experience
Subject: Great Show
And a ticket stub here:
Also, the venue changed names several times but was apparently called the Miami-Hollywood Speedway at the time. It was technically in Pembroke Pines.
Not a huge fan of late '69 (it seems like a real sloppy era to me) but this is a fun show with a great vibe. I like the unique mix on this recording, despite the distortion etc.
Subject: Running Hot...
That said, it's still one of the ballsiest shows the band ever performed, the off the hook energy being fueled by the rowdy but appreciative crowd. In spite of some rather skeevy vocals, this live wire performance is a true gem, due mainly to its rather primal nature, reminiscent of June '68.
The band might not have been in the best mood for this concert as many of these numbers are played with a certain brutality that leads you believe that the racetrack was left in smoldering ruins at the conclusion of the short but incendiary set closing Lovelight.
This being a festival gig, some of the numbers are truncated and perhaps rushed a bit, but not the raw Cumberland Blues or what might be the hardest ever Hard to Handle. Sadly, the Good Lovin' is cut, it's unclear how much angry jamming is missing.
The highlight of course, is the rip your face off version of Mason's Children that features two blistering extended instrumental breaks following some hilarious stage banter.
This is quintessential Grateful Dead and I have to give it five stars now, warts and all. (98 pts)
The recording is not perfect, some audio distortion form high levels in the red.
If you are a Pigpen fan, you will enjoy the show.
1969 seems so long ago and so different it's as if it was another planet in another galaxy in another Universe.
5 star show, 3 star recording equals 4 stars.
Eat, drink, be merry and listen to the GRATEFUL DEAD.
Thanks for the love.
Subject: Can't help it!!!
You can hear the overall sound of the Band development taking shape....
Wonderful.... Wonderful stuff....
Subject: One of the hardest
Subject: Show needs to be pitch controlled
Subject: Great Pig, a little distorted...
Subject: Rowdy Show
Subject: Rowdy Show
Subject: Write it off as stoned...
High Energy show, worth it for the stage banter alone. And it includes, for my money, the best Mason's Children they ever performed. Jerry just rips it up in one of his alltime great solos.
Subject: Now You've Done It, PIG!
Raw musical energy with that great connection between band and audience that made the Dead so special.